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'Mercedes unintentionally hampers Aston Martin development'

'Mercedes unintentionally hampers Aston Martin development'

28-03-2023 13:30 Last update: 15:35


It seems Mercedes is unintentionally standing in the way of Aston Martin's development. In a technical analysis of this year's Aston Martin car, it looks at Formu1a.uno looks at how the car is put together and in what areas Aston Martin can still gain ground against the competition.

Aston Martin has made considerable strides this season compared to last year. In large part, this is due to the acquisition of new names within the team. Eric Blandin came over from Mercedes and Dan Fallows was snatched away from Red Bull to jointly manage the new Aston Martin car design. The inspiration for the new model may be obvious: in almost every element of aerodynamics, the car looks like an outright copy of Red Bull. Yet there are some crucial areas where the two cars differ, and that seems to be mainly due to Mercedes.

Mercedes parts get in the way of Red Bull design

Indeed, Aston Martin is still Mercedes' customer team. That primarily means the team adopts Mercedes' engine, but it also buys other parts from the German marque. According to Formu1a.uno's analysis, even the entire rear of the car comes from Mercedes. "The gearbox and rear suspension are the same as in the W14 [from Mercedes]. These parts are a bit bigger and heavier, so there is less airflow at the AMR23's diffuser. This design was made specifically for a car with very compact bodywork, like the W14 with the zero-sidepods concept."

So in Aston Martin's car, Red Bull's aerodynamic development and Mercedes' mechanical development collide. Aston Martin can solve the diffuser problem by putting more effort into the rear wing, but that in turn creates new problems with drag. This may explain why Aston Martin seems to have more trouble with speed on the straights than Red Bull.